Ancient ruins give us a fascinating window into the past: how people lived, the spaces they inhabited and their daily lives. Historians, architects and travelers alike marvel at these remnants of time past, but it’s often hard to get a sense of what these spectacular buildings would have looked like at their peak. Expdia decided to step back in time and recreate some of their favorite ancient ruins in their original locations. Of course there weren't a ton of Hellenic ones, but some are close enough.

The Parthenon
Back in ancient times, this temple sheltered a monumental golden statue of Athena, the Greek goddess of wisdom, craft and war. Sitting atop the hill at the Acropolis, an ancient citadel in Athens, the Parthenon cuts an imposing shape. In 1687 it was severely damaged in the Great Turkish War, but much of the sturdy Doric architecture withheld the blast, and a good chunk of it is still intact to this day. Nowadays it’s a tourist hotspot attracting millions of visitors a year. Here it is, fully restored to its original glory. Athena herself would be proud.

Temple of Jupiter
Built in dedication to Jupiter, the god of the sky and thunder, this temple was the main center of religious life in the ancient city of Pompeii, a small Roman town on the Bay of Naples. It stood dominant in the Forum, with Mount Vesuvius looming ominously behind it. The volcano erupted in August of 79 AD, tragically destroying Pompeii. The site was rediscovered in the 16th century, and many years of excavation have given the millions of yearly visitors a fascinating insight into the daily life of this 1st century Roman city.

Area Sacra di Largo Argentina – Temple B
This square in Rome houses not one, but four Roman temple ruins. It was discovered during construction work in the 1920s. Temple B is the most recent of the four temples, and six of its columns, the original flight of steps and the alta are all still intact. Visitors to the area will not only find a fascinating archaeological site, but also hundreds of cats living among the ruins. Volunteers feed, clean and look after the cats and visitors are encouraged to say hello or even adopt one of them. Here is what the temple would have looked like, minus the cats.